2015 Blog Feed-forward: Building on an Elephant’s Memory

“Should old blog posts be forgot, and never brought to mind?

Should old blog posts be forgot, from days not long ago?”

For the next 31 days I’m going to flip it and reverse it, blogging backwards and revisiting all of last year’s posts.

I’m doing this for three reasons: Focused output, reflective practice and sheer experimentation.

1) Focused output

Running Track HurdlesAfter doing a 2014 blog self-assessment in the previous post, I decided that 2015 will see significantly more output in terms of number of blog entries. The intent here is quality and frequency of entries, not necessarily quantity of words or pictures. In past years I’ve set goals such as 1+ posts per week. Clearly, not aggressive enough to establish a solid habit. One year I posted 66 times, but then slipped after that. Last year saw a mere 27, which included the aforementioned self-assessment piece.

The good news is that 27 is a convenient number for a daily regimen of 31 days with weekend breaks.  Also, those previous 27 posts provide a straightforward editorial calendar to follow, making follow through more likely.

Daily challenge accepted!

2) Reflective practice

infinite-mirrorsSomeone, I forget who, once told me that I have a good memory. I don’t know if that’s true. I’ve never had my brain’s synapses directly tested to see whether they retain highly stable electrical firing patterns. I don’t know if such a test even exists (yet). What I do know is that I’m a big fan of reflective practice.

In my previous post I referenced a piece by Clay Shirky on the shutting out of distractions to be able to focus and learn. The critical importance and advantage of reflective practice is a recurring theme of this blog.

Reflective practice is how you put time on your side, a kind of compound interest for talent. It’s also one way to develop your brain to have an elephant’s memory, with higher than average long term recall. Here’s a decent post about it for people in the instructional design business.  Here is an even more rigorous piece about it by Maria Popova for people in any business. As with the Shirky, I challenge you the reader to read the Popova link without being interrupted or distracted.

For the next 27 posts (including this one), I will revisit the corresponding mirror image posting from 2014 and re-write, re-interpret, revise, extend, shorten, or in some cases simply re-post.  In fact, tomorrow will be a straight re-post (or “re-blog”).

3) Massaging the medium

66st-leap-of-faithI became a fan of Marshall McLuhan in college, while at the same time being trained by outstanding teachers at the McGill School of Architecture. Because of that, any time I’m given a medium of expression I like to explore and play with it.

The pre-dated blog entry was something I did in my early blogging days of 2007, and in many ways was a bootstrap for me to gain writing momentum. It was also a way for me to address the transient and disposable nature of a real time, date-based medium. The flipped, reversed and compressed editorial calendar of January 2015 follows in a similar spirit.

I also like chiastic structures and spoonerisms; these show up from time to time in my posts and paragraphs. That said, when I do something experimental, sometimes I’m happy with the output but other people don’t seem to like it. On the other hand, sometimes I’m not happy with the output but other people seem to like it.  Who knows what kind of internal or external feedback I’ll get from this next month.

Experimentation, reflection and focused output — the next 31 days will be a kind of turning-over-and-pressing-down-of-the-mulch of previous posts, allowing some of last year’s musings to ferment and become consolidated into my memory, from days not long ago.

Or maybe it’s just the Curious Case of the Blogging Button.

Onward with words, into 2015.


About danspira

My blog is at: http://danspira.com. My face in real life appears at a higher resolution, although I do feel pixelated sometimes.

Posted on January 1, 2015, in Architecture, Art, Blogging, Career, Information Design, Metaphors, photography, Productivity, Writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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